Light Heavyweight: 2012, Dec 17-23

#3 Jean Pascal shook off the rust by dominating Alexei Kuziemski in Montreal on Saturday, but his shoulder troubles re-emerged in the process, as he re-injured it in the 4th round.  Nevertheless, he coasted to victory.  Surprisingly to me, the fight was contested several pounds over the 175 pound limit.  Normally this would prompt me to remove Pascal, who hadn’t fought at all since May 2011, but he already has a fight scheduled against Chad Dawson that will definitely be at light heavyweight since it’s for a belt.  If that fight is called off- even if it’s due to Pascal’s legitimate injury- he will be promptly removed.

 

On the same card, Eleider Alvarez and Danny McIntosh also both came in heavy, with Alvarez scoring an impressive 8th round knockout.  Alvarez has an excellent argument for a rating simply based on the import of the win, but there is some case to be made that Averlant’s deserved win over Gutknecht (ranked #12 at the time) supersedes it even despite the Frenchman’s earlier struggles.  That, coupled with the fact that I’ve never given a fighter credit for winning in another division before, keeps Alvarez just on the outside of the top 20 for now.

 

#12 Vyacheslav Uzelkoff was in action, somewhat surprisingly, and easily stopped journeyman Giorgi Marosi in the first round.

 

No changes to the rankings.

 

Dan’s Top 20 (weeks in current position-weeks in top 10 (if applicable)-weeks in top 20)
Champ: Andre Ward (15-15-15)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- TKO10 Champ Chad Dawson (at SMW)
Next Fight: 2/23/2012- vs. SMW #8 Kelly Pavlik (at SMW)
A Ward injury has postponed his scheduled fight with Kelly Pavlik until February 23.
1) Chad Dawson (15-342-342)
Last Fight: 9/8/2012- L(TKO10) vs. SMW Champ Andre Ward (at SMW)
Next Fight: 3/23/2013- vs. #3 Jean Pascal
According to Gary Shaw, who promotes Dawson, the Pascal deal is done.
2) Bernard Hopkins (15-341-341)
Last Fight: 4/28/2012- L(MD12) vs. #2 Chad Dawson
Next Fight: 3/9/2012- vs. #5 Tavoris Cloud
Hopkins appeared likely to fight Nathan Cleverly, but instead opted for Tavoris Cloud.  The fight will take place in Brooklyn.
3) Jean Pascal (15-183-183)
Last Fight: 12/14/2012- UD10 Alexei Kuziemski (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/23/2013- vs. #1 Chad Dawson
Pascal is scheduled to re-match #1 Chad Dawson, but his shoulder injury from the Kuziemski fight could be a complication.
4) Gabriel Campillo (15-130-130)
Last Fight: 2/18/2012- L*(UD12) vs. #3 Tavoris Cloud (Robbery)
Next Fight: 1/19/2013- vs. Sergei Kovalev (UNR)
Campillo will now officially fight hot prospect Sergei Kovalev on January 19, in Bethlehem, PA, on NBC Sports.
5) Tavoris Cloud (15-173-173)
Last Fight: 2/18/2012- UD12* vs. #4 Gabriel Campillo (Robbery)
Next Fight: 3/9/2013- vs. #2 Bernard Hopkins
Perhaps Cloud’s reasoning for pulling out of the Murat fight had something to do with his apparently better-than-expected chances of landing a much more lucrative Hopkins battle- a fight that now appears set for March.
6) Cornelius White (15-23-53)
Last Fight: 7/14/2012- UD12 #10 Dmitri Sukhotski
Next Fight: Unknown
White is on a tear.  Is he really top-5 good?  I wouldn’t think so, but he proves me wrong every time I feel I might be overrating him.
7) Nathan Cleverly (15-150-150)
Last Fight: 11/10/2012- TKO8 Shawn Hawk (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/16/2013- vs. Robin Krasniqi (UNR)
Cleverly will be fighting a long-rumored fight with fringe prospect Robin Krasniqi on March 16 in the UK.
8) Tony Bellew (23-62-62)
Last Fight: 11/17/2012- UD12 Roberto Feliciano Bolonti (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Bellew wants Chad Dawson, but Dawson is apparently otherwise occupied with Pascal.
9) Karo Murat (15-64-85)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- TKO7 Sandro Siproshvili (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
No idea what’s next for Murat after Cloud left him at the proverbial altar.
10) Beibut Shumenov (15-126-130)
Last Fight: 6/2/2012- UD12 Enrique Ornelas (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
11) Isaac Chilemba (5-46)
Last Fight: 9/29/2012- UD8 Rayco Saunders (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
Chilemba came in a bit heavy, but performed as expected, shutting out journeyman Rayco Saunders.
12) Vyacheslav Uzelkoff (5-46)
Last Fight: 7/21/2012- W(MD12) vs. Mohamed Belkacem (UNR)
Next Fight: 12/15/2012- TKO1 Giorgi Marosi (UNR)
Uzelkoff easily dispatched Marosi, in a fight so last-minute that I didn’t even know about it a week in advance.
13) Andrzej Fonfara (5-23)
Last Fight: 11/16/2012- TKO7 Tommy Karpency (UNR)
Next Fight: 3/22/2013- vs. Unknown Opponent
Fonfara is scheduled to be in action on March 22 in Chicago.  No opponent yet.
14) Yusaf Mack (5-130)
Last Fight: 11/17/2012- L(KO3) vs. #1 SMW Carl Froch (at SMW)
Next Fight: Unknown
It’s no shame to lose to Carl Froch, but Mack’s showing was bad enough that you’ve got to wonder if he’s finished.
15) Jürgen Brähmer (15-35)
Last Fight: 4/21/2012- UD10 Vikapita Meroro (UNR)
Next Fight: 2/2/2013- vs. Eduard Gutknecht (UNR)
Braehmer has reportedly rescheduled his fight with Gutknecht for early February.  We’ll see if he follows through this time- always a big “if” with him.
16) Lucian Bute (7-7)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- UD12 #16 Denis Grachev
Next Fight: Unknown Date- vs. SMW #1 Carl Froch (at SMW)
Bute barely beat Grachev, and even more barely did so at light heavyweight, but I’ve still got to rate him. He’ll now fight a rematch with Froch in March or April.
17) Denis Grachev (7-34)
Last Fight: 11/3/2012- L(UD12) vs. SMW #4 Lucian Bute
Next Fight: Unknown
Grachev put forth a valiant effort against a heavy favorite in Bute, even after presumably draining almost all the way to 168.  As a result, his ranking remains mostly intact.
18) Dmitri Sukhotski (7-112)
Last Fight: 12/8/2012- TKO1 Vladimir Borovsky (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
19) Mikkel Kessler (7-31)
Last Fight: 12/8/2012- TKO3 Brian Magee (UNR) (at SMW)
Next Fight: Unknown
Kessler dismantled Brian Magee, but that was at 168.  I don’t know if Kessler plans to compete at light heavy again anytime soon.
20) Tony Averlant (7-38)
Last Fight: 11/9/2012- UD6 Lubo Hantak (UNR)
Next Fight: Unknown
It looks like Averlant’s profile hasn’t benefited much from what should have been a victory over a fringe contender from back in March, as he’s back to fighting awful opponents in 6-rounders.

 

The Week Ahead: #13 Super Middleweight Will Rosinsky moves up to fight journeyman Otis Griffin, who was ranked as recently as May 2011.
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